A study by Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) on the automated multi-level parking at Sarojini Nagar has revealed that even during peak hours,its occupancy is only between 20 and 40 per cent,while the parking area around it is packed.
The study was conducted between December 2011 and February 2012. The parking facility was inaugurated in November 2011. It can accommodate 824 cars and was built by DLF at a cost of Rs 80 crore. The complex also includes commercial space.
The report states that CSE contacted DLF to assess the usage of the system. As per the report,8,500 vehicles used the multi-level parking in December 2011 an average of 340 vehicles per day,which is just about 41 per cent.
The maximum occupancy on a single day was 465 vehicles. But in January,occupancy dipped to 4,300 vehicles. Such a drastic difference in demand was due to various factors like a number of technical glitches faced during the first month of of operation… the report stated.
These parking lots do not help reduce chaos and congestion because they are being set up in policy vacuum. This is the reason why National Urban Transport Policy and the Supreme Court have asked for a parking policy that will work as a restraint measure for personal vehicles. Surface parking rates need to be hiked if people are to make use of multi-level parking facilites, said Anumita Roy Chowdhary,head of CSEs urban mobility programme.
The report states: Both parking and retrieval time have increased waiting time for the parkers. It may take 20-25 minutes. Cars have to queue up to get inside. This discourages parkers. It is easier and less time-consuming to park on the surface. Congestion builds up on the approach road that has inadequate circulation space.
Responding to the report,DLF group executive director Rajeev Talwar said habits have to change if such parking facilities are to succeed. The habit needs to change and authorities need to play a role to ensure that people utilise facilites made available to them. People still prefer parking vehicles on roads as they think it is convenient. MCD has been trying to make multi-level parking for years and one such parking space on Asaf Ali Road which is a ramp parking has not worked. This particular parking has been made by a private player and not by utilising public money. It needs time to succeed. Also,surface level parking charges have to be increased to encourage people to use multi-level parking, he said.
NDMC spokesperson Amit Prasad said they would look into the report. He said usage of the parking facility has been improving each month.